Friday, October 24, 2014

Austrian Federal President Heinz Fischer who is visiting Athens met with Prime Minister Antonis Samaras yesterday (22.10) and discussed economic issues, the progress of reforms, as well as the very good bilateral relations between the two countries.

The Austrian President also met with Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Evangelo Venizelos, who noted that President Fischer "is a profound and true friend of Greece." He added that "very important is the fact that we share a common outlook on the Western Balkans, on the developments in the wider region, within the framework of international legality and the common European position."
  • Theophil Hansen Exhibition Inaugurated
During his stay in Athens, President of Austria along with his Greek counterpart Karolos Papoulias inaugurated (October 22) the exhibition Hellenic Renaissance: The architecture of Theophil Hansen, running at the Theocharakis Foundation, until January 18, 2015.

Theophil Hansen (1813-1891) was born in Copenhagen. During his nine-year stay in Athens (1837-1846), he composed the architectural narrative of Athenian Neoclassicism. In 1859, based on the University building created by his brother Christian, he conceived the so-called Athenian Trilogy - the complex of the Athens University, Academy and Library. He further designed the Observatory and Zappeion. At the same time, he excelled in Vienna where he designed a series of buildings, including the Parliament, the Academy of Fine Arts, the Greek Church, the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde Concert Hall and more.

The Francophone Business Forum is a three-day conference taking place in Athens from October 22 to 24. Prime Minister Antonis Samaras addressed the Francophone Business Forum Conference on October 22, a 3-day event taking place in Athens until October 24. Titled "Investments and bilateral and regional cooperation programmes," the event brings together members of French Parliament and representatives of Greek and French enterprises and chambers of commerce.
  • FM Venizelos @ Francophonie
Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Evangelos Venizelos addressed the Francophonie Business Forum Conference yesterday (23.10).

The minister said that during the difficult years of the Greek crisis " French businesses remained in Greece" and assured that the extroversion of the economy is one of the Greek government’s main priorities. He further set the targets of the economic and trade cooperation of Greece and France, saying "we can do a great deal to strengthen French investments in Greece, to support Greek-French cooperation, the export activities of Greek enterprises in France, and the joint actions that can even further promote France’s economic relations with Greece.”

 The foreign minister made special reference to the sectors of construction, tourism, transport, health, RES, water resources management and information science, saying they provide "inexhaustible potential for economic cooperation between French and Greek companies."

  • FinMin Speaks of Positive Growth in Q3
Addressing the Francophone forum, Finance Minister Gikas Hardouvelis said yesterday (23.10) that "After six years of continuous shrinking, the Greek economy is expected to have a positive real growth rate in the third quarter of 2014 and a positive annual real growth rate of GDP in 2014, a 'breakthrough' development."

He said further that the next day after the memorandum must be "a day of reasonable responsibility" and urged banks, particularly after completion of the stress tests round, "to become the basic pillar of growth, funding investments and offering liquidity to enterprises." Additionally, referring to a new era of relations with the country's European partners and the IMF, Hardouvelis said a precondition was "fulfilling fiscal targets, improving economic data and continuing reforms and mostly political responsibility and stability".

He said that the only sustainable road for the future of the Greek economy was raising productivity, attracting new investments and boosting exports.

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Evangelos Venizelos made the following statement yesterday regarding the terrorist attack in Ottawa on October 22: "We unequivocally condemn the terrorist action that took place yesterday in the Canadian capital, Ottawa. We express our undivided support for the victims’ loved ones, for our friends the Canadian people and for the Canadian authorities.

Greece condemns every act of violence, especially when such an act stems from the intolerant motives of extremists, who are deceiving themselves if they believe that in this way they can impose their irrationality on democratic societies with a tradition of multicultural coexistence, respect for religious freedoms, and tolerance."

The University of Patras has manufactured the first Greek electric racing car and secured first place (in August, 2014) in the E1 Class category of the International Competition Formula Student Czech Republic 2014.

The one-seat racing car weighs 235kg with over 110hp and was designed and manufactured by students of Laboratory for Manufacturing Systems & Automation (LMS) of the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Aeronautics of the University of Patras.

The car, which excelled in the Acceleration, Skid-Pad, Autocross, Endurance categories of the competition, was presented yesterday in a special event in the Greek Car Museum in Athens.

The 2nd edition of the Naxos Mountain Bike Race will be hosted on Naxos Island on October 26. The technically challenging 22km route for adults goes through some of the island’s most significant ancient and  Byzantine monuments and sites.

Participants will start racing from the historically significant village of Sagri, they will pass through beautiful landscapes and encounter sightseeing highlights such as the magnificent ancient  Temple of Demeter (6th century B.C.) and the 17th century Timios Stavros monastery. The race also includes a separate category for teenagers (12 to 17 years old), an easier 13.5km route.